After watching the first episode of MTV’s Scream TV adaptation, I had no idea how to feel. It wasn’t good enough to be considered legitimately entertaining, and it wasn’t bad enough to be illegitimately entertaining. The worst part of it all was the poorly written dialogue. And considering the pilot episode was written by film series’ writer Kevin Williamson, I had no idea who or what to blame. But a show is never as wonky as its series premiere, so I had a little bit of hope going into episode two.
From the looks of “Hello, Emma,” we’re heading into “so bad, it’s good” territory with this show and I want to see where it leads.
Episode two essentially follows the same formula as the pilot as it leads off with a teen death that somewhat spurs the plot along. As a fallout from being outed by an internet video filmed by main girl Emma and previous victim Nina, shy Christian girl Rachel cuts herself (with razor blades sitting in a heart container, go figure) and eventually is hung by the killer. As everyone continues to not care (and I had a hard time myself since we’ve only seen people killed in the episode they were introduced), main girl Emma continues to prove she’s just the worst. Not only did she passively bully her former best friend, she also is torn between a terribly conceived love triangle between her jerk jock boyfriend and the mysterious new transfer student with the Skeet Ulrich mustache (who’s probably also the killer). We end up at a random basketball game, the nerd guy Noah paints “Doosh” on some jerk guy’s truck and goes on a date with the cute nerdy girl, and the killer reveals his masked face to the populace.
Importantly, we got an explanation for the new mask. It’s apparently the face of the Lakewood’s first killer Brandon James, but it still doesn’t save it from looking wonky. And although Scream 4 already dealt with current technology in a cool, interesting way, I’m surprised it took until a TV show to send a mass .gif image. We also got more screen time with the killer’s voice and, like in Scream 3, he’s got a voice changing device. Hopefully the newly introduced Courtney Cox stand in, Piper Shaw (a podcaster, since news is so old fashioned now), can do something about that. But I’m still having a hard time connecting with any of the characters I keep getting told I’m supposed to care about.
I don’t think we’re supposed to. When you get moments like a random extra speaking super loudly in the bathroom “They’ve got blood on their hands” to absolutely no one but Emma sitting in the stall, we’re just supposed to enjoy how hyper aware and terrible this is. The fun’s starting to poke out of the seams, and “Hello, Emma” is actually filled with a few entertaining sequences. Still not perfect, but not as bad as before. Emma is nowhere as badass as Sidney Prescott yet.
- Hey I remembered names now! Not that it does anything for character development…
- I can’t get over how terrible Skeet Ulrich mustache guy’s hair is.
- Got to admit, the “Doosh” gag got a good laugh out of me since no one bothered to point out it was spelled badly.
- Did Emma and her mom really share a moment over her friend’s dead and open body?
- This episode featured a sloppy hanging death (where the killer actually moved the death scene and showed inexperience not found in the films), but it’s a neat way to get around the show’s gore-less situation.
- More Piper Shaw please.